The 6th AJB DOC Presents its Jury Members

It's noteworthy that almost all of the jury members had previously screened their original documentaries at this festival. They were involved as the producers, and some of them had even won awards, except for the Al Jazeera representative on the jury.

The 6th AJB DOC Presents its Jury Members

The international jury for the 6th Al Jazeera Balkans Documentary Film Festival (AJB DOC) includes director Vitaliy Manskiy, director Bernadett Tuza-Ritter, producer Vanja Jambrović, director Nermin Hamzagić, and producer Mohamed Elmongy.


The five-member jury will decide on the best film from the AJB DOC Film Festival competition programme and grant the "AJB DOC Main Award".


It's noteworthy that almost all of the jury members had previously screened their original documentaries at this festival. They were involved as the producers, and some of them had even won awards, except for the Al Jazeera representative on the jury, Mohamed Elmongy.


Tuza-Ritter won the "AJB DOC Main Award" in 2018 for her documentary "Why Slavery? A Woman Captured", Manskiy presented two feature-length documentaries, "Putin's Witnesses" and "Gorbachev. Heaven", Jambrović produced two films, "Srbenka" and "Museum of the Revolution", and Nermin Hamzagić premiered his documentary "The Rope" at the Festival in 2019.


"We are honoured that authors and producers return to the AJB DOC Film Festival year after year in a variety of capacities. That's a clear indication of the value of our investment in the Festival and the attention we pay to the participants, producers, and everyone else involved", said Festival Director Edhem Fočo.


Biographies of the Jury Members

Vitaliy Manskiy was born in 1963 in Lviv/Ukraine, USSR. He graduated from VGIK — the All-Russian State Institute of Cinematography in 1989 and went on to become one of the most notable documentary filmmakers and producers today. As a director, he has shot over 35 films. His films were shown at over 500 international film festivals, including forums in Cannes, Berlin, San Sebastian, Rotterdam, Karlovy Vary, Amsterdam, Locarno, Toronto etc., and have won over 100 awards. Manskiy created almost 200 films as a producer.


He is the founder and President of Artdocfest — the Russian Open Documentary Film Festival for Russian-language creative documentaries (activity stopped in 2022 due to Russian censorship, as well as Russia’s war against Ukraine). In 2020 he founded IDFF Artdocfest/Riga which takes place in Latvia, where Manskiy has been living since 2014.


Manskiy made the following documentaries: Eastern Front (2023), Gorbachev. Heaven (2020), Putin’s Witnesses (2018), Rodnye (Close Relations) (2016), Under the Sun (2015), The Book (2014), Pipeline (2013), Motherland or Death (2011), Beginning/Nikolina Gora. Epilogue (2009), Virginity (2008), Dawn/Sunset. Dalai Lama 14 (2008), Wild, Wild Beach (2006), Gagarin’s Pioneers (2005), Broadway. Black Sea (2002), Gorbatchev. After The Empire/Yeltsin. Another Life/Putin. Leap (2001), Private Chronicles. Monologue (1999), Bliss (1995), Cuts of a Recurrent War (1993), Lenin’s Body (1991), Etudes about Love (1990-1995), Post (1990) and Boomerang (1988).


Bernadett Tuza-Ritter is an award-winning filmmaker specializing in creative documentaries and fiction. She studied directing and editing in Budapest, Hungary. Her first feature-length documentary Why Slavery? A Woman Captured was premiered at the IDFA Main Competition and Sundance Film Festival 2018 and was nominated for the European Film Awards. The film won 38 awards and has been broadcast on 70+ TV channels around the world.  Bernadett is a member of the Hungarian Society of Film and Video Editors, the Hungarian Film Academy and the European Film Academy, and co-founder of the Hungarian Documentary Association. Her film Why Slavery? A Woman Captured won the main award at the AJB DOC 2018. 


Vanja Jambrović graduated in philosophy and comparative literature at the Faculty for Social Sciences of the University of Zagreb in 2005 and in 2011 she graduated in film and theatre production at the Academy of Dramatic Art, also in Zagreb. 


Since 2009 she’s been making films with Restart as a delegate producer. Vanja’s track record includes more than 20 films of all shapes and sizes. Her films have travelled the globe, having been screened in competition selections at IDFA, Hot Docs, Toronto IFF, Visions du Reel, Fid Marseille, Karlovy Vary IFF, Sarajevo FF and hundreds more. Vanja is also a Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program Grantee, for the feature documentary project Museum of the Revolution directed by Srđan Keča (2021). Also, film that she produced Srbenka directed by Nebojša Slijepčević has been preselected for EFA Awards in the best documentary category in 2018 and won Doc Allianze Award for the best documentary in 2018. 


Vanja is also tutoring for international workshops such as Documentary Campus Master School, Ex Oriente, CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator and since 2020 she is teaching “Documentary production” at Academy of Drama Art in Zagreb. 


Nermin Hamzagić was born in 1986 in Sarajevo. He graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo where he works as an assistant professor. He directed several theater plays and performances, as well as short and documentary films. In 2019 he directed his first feature film Full Moon. The European Film Academy nominated Full Moon for the European Discovery Price - Prix Fipresci 2020 award. Nermin Hamzagić also directed the following films: The Rope (2018, Documentary film), Interview (2017, Short film), Damaged Goods (2015, Short film), Soul Train (2015, Documentary film). 


Mohamed Elmongy joined Al Jazeera Documentary Channel in 2011 as a senior producer and commissioning editor. He commissioned and coproduced dozens of films in multiple regions of the world (MENA, Europe, and Africa), which were screened at notable film festivals such as Sundance, Cannes, Locarno, IDFA, and Hot Docs. Elmongy is an avid professional in the international film industry who has participated in several film events as an expert, speaker and commissioning producer.